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Table 6 Psychological first aid

From: How to talk with dying patients and their families after disasters and humanitarian crises: a review of available tools and guides for disaster responders

Approach Examples
Providing practical care and support “Are you cold? Here is a blanket”
Do not supply solutions Do not say: “You can have another baby”; do not say: “You’re young, you will marry again”
Assessing needs and concerns Need to find family; need for shelter and food
Helping people address basic needs Identify resources to help deliver food, water, and essential non-food items
Listening to people “Tell me more …” “I hear you saying that …”
Comforting people “I cannot imagine how difficult this has been.” “I’m so sorry for what you are going through. I’m here to help.”
Helping people connect to information, services, and social supports Identifying resources within the community or through aid agencies
Protecting people from further harm Be sensitive that disclosing their experience maybe re-traumatizing
  1. (Source: adapted from WHO 2018b)